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Scientology’s 2012 in Review: The Master Goeth Before a Fall

PhoenixTheMasterWe’re still looking back at this amazing year for Scientology watchers, refreshing your memory about what got our attention in 2012.

We hope you have plenty to say as we look back at the stories that mattered in the past twelve months…

As the fall began, we were enjoying all the speculation by reviewers about the Scientology content in Paul Thomas Anderson’s movie The Master. (Those that actually knew some church history recognized that the film is shot through with it.) We pointed out how Anderson’s script was even more vicious about Hubbard and his invention than the finished movie, and we heard great suggestions from our readers about who the Joaquin Phoenix character, Freddie Quell, might be based on.

Now that contest season is heating up, expect a new round of media about Anderson’s movie — especially if it takes home a lot of little gold statues.

Other notable stories in October and November…

— In another sign that governmental agencies are finally starting to take Scientology’s controversies seriously, an Oregon labor board hit a Bend dentist with a stunning $348,000 fine for forcing an employee to attend a Scientology symposium or lose her job. She quit rather than put up with his constant pressuring, but the board decided she was entitled to the huge award for what she’d been through. The dentist is appealing the order.

— Our readers love discussing Scientology’s esoteric metaphysics! That was the inescapable conclusion after a couple of entries about an early Hubbard lecture about the history of the universe and our questions about how thetans take over meat bodies produced huge numbers of comments.

— The tabloids, likely fed by Tom Cruise’s PR people, keep pushing the line that Cruise is leaving Scientology to win back Katie Holmes or spend more time with his daughter. We explained why this persistent rumor is complete horseshit.

— One of our tipsters forwarded to us a Sea Org application that they decided not to fill out. The form, with its incredibly invasive questions, became a minor hit on the Internet as it was picked up by Buzzfeed and others.

— Another of our tipsters noticed that Tommy Davis and his wife Jessica Feshbach had been deleted from Scientology’s media relations website. So that makes it official: Tommy Davis is no longer a Scientology spokesman. (We hear that they’re both out of the Sea Org now, and living in the Austin area.)

— On Halloween, Florida attorney Ken Dandar filed a federal lawsuit against Scientology, alleging a conspiracy to corrupt the state courts and cause him financial ruin. We followed this case closely for several weeks, but at this point Dandar has been unable to get the federal courts to intervene with what’s happening at the state level.

— Coming out of Dandar’s lawsuit, however, is a blockbuster new set of allegations from Marty Rathbun, who says under oath that the church did, in fact, attempt to corrupt Florida’s investigative agencies and judges in order to derail a criminal investigation into the 1995 death of Lisa McPherson and to minimize the damage of a wrongful death lawsuit. Despite corroboration in the form of an affidavit from a former judge’s clerk and our interview with former Sea Org worker Mat Pesch, who watched $20 million in Sea Org reserves drained for the McPherson operation, there seems to be little interest from Florida officials to do anything.

— One of our most popular weekly features, previously unpublished excerpts from L. Ron Hubbard’s original dispatches at sea circa 1968-1971, comes to an end after a full year. Gosh, it was fun to sail with the Commodore while we could!

— A presidential election that features a Mormon candidate coming close to becoming US president prompts us to make a mildly humorous illustration suggesting that members of other new religions — namely, Scientology — would be intrigued by Mitt Romney’s relatively strong showing in a contest that went down to the wire. One of our more loyal commenters, Skip Press, for some reason completely misread the intention of our graphic, and he self-combusted in a spontaneous nuclear fireball. What gives, Skip? Come on back, hombre.

— We waited until November 29 to reveal what we’d witnessed back in September — the reunion of private eyes Paul Marrick and Greg Arnold with the man who hired them in 1988, Marty Rathbun, to follow Pat Broeker for the church. For the next 24 years, Marrick and Arnold kept tabs on Broeker, who church leader David Miscavige apparently still considers a threat to his grip on the organization. After their job ended, Marrick and Arnold sued, and for only a little more than one day gave interviews about what their lives as Scientology’s master spies had been like.

— The day after that story appeared, Rathbun himself revealed a surprise: he was pulling up stakes and moving to a more secure location near San Antonio after his house near Corpus Christi had been the subject of outlandish levels of church surveillance.

Next: We’ll take a look at the surprises that December had in store, and preview a few surprises coming in January.

 

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  • John P.

    While this period lacked the immense reach of July, there are some interesting lessons to be learned from this relatively fallow period. There’s not one core unifying principle to these developments that I can find, other than to see that the universe continues to grind away on the cult in so many different directions, and that this daily drip of bad news continues, the bitter fruit of what the cult has sown over the last half century, even if there aren’t shocking new developments or crazy celebrity headlines.

    Dental smackdown: The fact that the small-town tooth doc was hit with such a large award has to have gone through the grapevine and been noticed by a lot of other small business owners in the core funding base of the cult — the dentists, chiropractors and other professional service people who comprise a big chunk of the run-of-the-mill IAS funding. This crew, increasingly aging and worried about retirement, has to worry about the chance of getting hit with an award for evangelizing Scientology that would essentially put them out of business, and imperil their retirement. After being bled dry for years by fees given to the WISE Consulting front group, and after “enturbulating” customers with aggressive sales practices, not a lot of personal service business can withstand getting hit by a $350,000 judgment (plus legal fees, which were probably not trivial, especially if this guy is appealing the decision). And where is the cult to help stand up for the “religious freedom” of a member, in his time of need? The silence is deafening. This case stands alongside the South Salem NY veterinarian who was similarly fined a decade ago, and along with actor Michael Fairbairn’s suit against his chiropractor for “disconnecting” from him; that suit was also settled sometime around this period.

    Sea Org application: In light of recent trends in cult membership, this application seems laughable in its arrogance (as well as its odd list of crimes of special interest. I particularly love the “cool” names for LSD and PCP that were used — ones that were undoubtedly not the street names the cool kids used back in the day, which now seem doubly bizarre today. Who ever heard of “sherms” as a name for PCP? And, of course, the misunderstanding of the obvious point of pharmacology — that drugs are effective precisely because they are so completely bioreactive in the body and metabolize faster than most compounds, giving the lie to the notion that drug residue stays in the body for protracted periods — causes my blood to boil, as I have said previously on numerous occasions. But the real humor in the Sea Org app is to see the Sooper Powerz that this, the elite force of Scientology, demonstrates, as evidenced by the videos from Anon “Darth Xander,” which show Sea Org drones working hard to avert their eyes from protesters’ signs as they get off the bus from their maximum security apartment complex to flee inside the cult’s office complexes for another day of menial make-work jobs following the bizarre Hubbard bureaucracy doing tasks that were obsolete long ago to extract money from and control a rapidly dwindling membership. Hubbard’s quote in this light is comical: “To join the Sea Org is the sensible thing to do. There is very little that could be more important to you than to add to this power. Many are called. Few are chosen. You can be part of this new civilization. “It is possible we may welcome you as shipmates in the Sea Org, the organization of power.”

    Marrick and Arnold case: This is probably a watershed in its right, because the cult capitulated and shelled out a payout that I would estimate at about $3 million apiece to get Marrick and Arnold to disappear quietl (I’m figuring $150,000 per year apiece for 20 years, reflecting their net income foregone when the money pool dried up). And they did it without a single hearing, a single deposition, a single motion, or any obvious intimidation of the pair (the bizarre video camera surveillance of both Marty Rathbun’s and Mike Rinder’s houses notwithstanding). In other words, the cult gave up the moment that papers were filed. If we have another case like this, it will be interesting to see if this is the real legacy of the Debbie Cook case: the formerly litigious cult (read the Wollersheim case timeline to see just how nasty they can be) is now utterly terrified of any negative publicity from the cult, so it now settles quietly and quickly to avoid a flap. Incidentally, though they may be muzzled from discussing the case or Scientology, the travel blog from Debbie Cook’s husband is a clever dig at the cult — any former fans of Debbie’s from her days running Flag can now keep up with their adventures living in various tropical paradises; the unstated source and presumed amount of their settlement money has to be obvious to any cult member who looks at the lavish pictures of their new life.

    Orders of the Day: This was one of the highlights of my week, and now it’s gone! Please, Tony, tell us that there might be more crazy to publish. There had to have been some nuggets that you passed up that could actually be new gems of craziness. Heck, there must have been at least some Advance Magazine “OT Success Stories” that fill the bill. We’re dying out here for our weekly dose of insanity. Seriously, though, these relatively unpolished source documents show the craziness of Hubbard first-hand, and provide an important counterweight to any attempt by the cult to portray Hubbard as a slick, suave and thoughtful guy. What shows up here is how prone he was to being temperamental, paranoid, and overreactive to almost anything that bothered him that happened. It also showed the complete ineptitude of his hand-picked crew that formed the basis for the Sea Org, that “organization of power” that forms the elite cult commando force.

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Who ever heard of “sherms” as a name for PCP?

      This was a very common “nick”…at least on the west coast circa 1980. Dipped Sherman Cigarettes were the primary way to “Visit” this particular “Angel” back then.

      And I just want to tell you how it warms my heart (sarcasm)…that you can come up with such a cogent digest and this is all I got………….LULZ

      Of course I am still not over the OT Postman (advance mag) using his superpowers to straighten out a corner of a magazine…even though he threw the thing down on someones front porch to begin with.

      Idiot!

    • BosonStark

      Speaking of Advance Magazine, I noticed in the Amazon preview for Wright’s upcoming January 17 book release, Going Clear: Scientology, Hollywood, and the Prison of Belief, he recounts the famous goldfish resurrection (of the almost dead) story from Advance — probably my favorite — which is practically Scientology’s scriptural version of the Lazarus story.

      I consider it to be one of the greatest semi-documented miracles of Dr. Hubtard’s dianetical technologies, since Wright also reveals that David Miscavige uses a steroid mist inhaler for his asthma — what a shocker. Cross that one of your list of Dianutty miracles folks, along with growing a 3rd set of teeth. Someone with an advance copy of Wright’s book revealed that DM tidbit on ESMB.

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Oh my gosh…I read that OT goldfish story yesterday at Amazon…

        It was like WTF!!!!

        I was cackling like a madwoman after that.

        I am glad those OT’s put those ‘superpowerz’ to such good use!

        What would Teegeeack do without them.

      • sugarplumfairy

        I knew if he had asthma, he had to be getting treatment.. but all the lesser scientologists can’t have seizure medicine for their epilepsy or insulin for their diabetes.. the most ethical group on the planet my aunt fanny..

        • Observer

          It’s the greatest good for the greatest number of dynamics (assuming you define “the greatest number of dynamics” as “Little Davey’s 1D”) that Pope Slappy the First not suffocate on his own constricted and phlegm-filled airways; therefore, by LRH’s perverted definition of “ethical” it is “ethical”. Besides, just as it was for his mentor LRH, the rules don’t apply to him. Let the degraded lesser beings drop their meat bodies. That’s how Big Beings roll.

          • I never fail to be fascinated by the way the CO$ has twisted (probably intentionally) Jeremy Bentham’s formula for Utilitarianism, which correctly stated is “the greatest good for the greatest number”. The Co$ has taken a concept that would seek to provide for the well-being of the broadest number of people and perverted it to ensure that the majority’s well-being is subordinated (in reality degraded) to provide an opulent lifestyle to one individual (originally LRH and now DM).

      • FLUNK000

        Can’t wait for that book!

      • I thought Wrights book was put on hold? It’s still coming out in Jan.? I’m really looking forward to this one.

        • BuryTheNuts2

          Just the UK version.

    • mirele

      Mr. Capitalist, this has nothing to do with Scientology, but I was wondering if you had any observations on the fight between a hedge fund manager and Herbalife. Personally, I’m rooting for the hedge fund manager, because I think all these multi-level marketing outfits are a rip-off and a type of pyramid scheme.

      • John P.

        Short sellers perform an important service, providing liquidity in the face of major sell-offs of stock. The discussion is often theoretical, but basically can be summed up as this: if bad news happens, without short-sellers covering their positions, there would be very little to stop prices of a stock seeing major bad news from coming to zero. Short selling is a phenomenon largely misunderstood by the lay public, but I’m not going to go into it here.

        Ackman has been dead right about some things and ridiculously wrong about others. I glanced through his presentation, which is available here: http://factsaboutherbalife.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/12/Who-wants-to-be-a-Millionaire.pdf. It appears to be generally solid work, though there are a couple minor holes I saw that I would have wanted him to address; they wouldn’t necessarily have invalidated the conclusion, however. This sort of research is the kind of thing we do in Global Capitalism HQ when we are considering putting a big bet (long or short) behind an idea. The big winners in the market do careful research; this probably took a couple of months of time for Ackman’s analysts to put together.

        I saw the spike in HLF stock when this broke a few days ago, but didn’t pay it much mind. We knew from long experience that HLF is another in an endless series of “cult stocks.” Look up Overstock.com, Krispy Kreme Donuts, Iridium Satellites, and a whole host of Internet stocks in the late 1990s. Even if we’re right about the ultimate demise of a given cult stock, chances are we won’t make money because it’s difficult to predict when the fanboys of the stock will finally give up and sell. We avoid cult stocks entirely, either on the way up or on the way down. We may miss some great opportunities but we also sleep much better at night.

        The one thing I can’t figure out about Ackman’s work on HLF is: why now? The most important rule for successfully shorting a stock is that there has to be a specific catalyst that is likely to happen in a specific window of time to trigger a decline in value for a stock. What Ackman points out about HLF’s business model has been true for a long time, not just at HLF but at most other organizations of its sort. So he has assembled an impressively researched dissection of HLF’s business model.

        My favorite detail: the observation that the company spends less than 0.2% of revenue on R&D despite making all sorts of claims for just how amazing all the science is that goes into its products. Most tech companies spend 15-20% of revenue on R&D, 100x what HLF spends. Pharma giant Merck, in its most recent 10-Q filing, disclosed spending about 15% of revenue on R&D — and that’s probably a little lower than a decade ago because pipelines of blockbuster drugs are a little thin. 0.2% of revenue is inconceivable. Incidentally, in its June 30, 2012 fiscal year, Procter & Gamble reported spending $2.0 billion of $83.6 billion in revenue on R&D, about 2.4% of revenue, twelve times what HLF reported. P&G’s general business is somewhat comparable to HLF’s, so some of the ratios and percentages for various things should be relatively similar to those at HLF.

        So while I think Ackman’s conclusions are correct about the flaws in the business model, I can’t understand why he’s going after the company at this exact moment in time. We don’t do popcorn and caek at Global Capitalism HQ, but if we did, we would be frying up some right now to watch the fireworks.

        • mirele

          Thanks! Ackman’s interest could be as simple as a poor cousin getting taken for an HLF ride.

          I was reminded that Scientologists tend to gravitate towards MLM schemes to make the money they need for expensive courses and auditing. One ex-Scn said that when he was in (1970s), the MLM was Shaklee.

          • John P.

            My guess is that Ackman did this now because he saw the move in the stock when David Einhorn asked management a few relatively straightforward questions on their quarterly earnings call in May. The market interpreted that to mean that Einhorn, a successful hedge fund manager, was short the stock in significant quantity because he knew something about the company’s future outlook. The stock dropped 25% the morning after the earnings call, despite the fact that the company met Wall Street forecasts for earnings, which is somewhat unusual.

            So perhaps Ackman figured that Einhorn was able to “jawbone” the stock down 25% on the basis of a couple questions, that if he put together a major “thud piece” (i.e., immense, detailed report) on the stock, it would perhaps hit the stock even harder, because it might wake up the “true believers” to the issues he discovered. That’s a risky bet, but it has sometimes worked before — look at what happened earlier this year when carefully researched reports on “Sino-Forest Corp.” exposed significant fraud at the company, a Chinese timber company.

            Note that what he did here is most definitely not market manipulation — circulating false rumors into the market is against the law, but he did not circulate rumors privately; he published his results to the Internet, and, whether he turns out to be right or wrong, he based his work on enough publicly available information that there are no grounds to come after him for lying. Ackman has complied fully with the letter and the spirit of the law in how he’s gone about doing this, as far as I can tell.

        • Semper Phi

          Funny you should call HLF a “cult stock.” I knew a few staff members in my org who were HLF distributors, and a few of my students too. Also ACN seems to be fairly popular with the org public. A cult stock in more ways than one…

    • FLUNK000

      I know I deserve a big “FLUNK” for this, but, even though I never tried PCP, I know why it’s called a “sherm”. The same way a ghetto marijuana joint is rolled in a cigar leaf to make a “blunt”, a “sherm” is a Nat Sherman cigarette soaked in PCP.

      • John P.

        Where I went to school, nobody did PCP or Ketamine because they were “street drugs.” We only did drugs for smart people, like acid and pot and Ecstacy (before it became both popular and illegal). Or so we imagined the world. That’s why I had no clue about “sherms” — we thought PCP was the drug of choice for gang bangers from dingy hopeless places far from our reality. That’s not exactly our demographic.

        • FLUNK000

          Imagine you came upon some steps going down, only you didn’t see them … you know what it feels like to have your foot “drop”? That’s how normal walking feels when you’re high on PCP, or at least that’s what I’ve been told.

          James Brown, the musical genius who invented “Funk”, loved the stuff in his later life.

          Maybe that was the inspiration for the lyrics to the song, “Gravity”:

          Gravity!

          The big G

          G-R-A-V-I-T-Y !

          On the third planet

          From the Sun

          I’m just tryin’

          To get the funky job done

          Reminds me of something Miles Davis said: “Space music’d be really something … but they don’t have no gravity up there. You couldn’t have no downbeat! ”

          Which reminds me of what Albert Einstein said, ““If I were not a physicist, I would probably be a musician. I often think in music. I live my daydreams in music.”

          I read Malcolm Gladwell’s book “Blink”, which tries to explain intuitive thought and how we form our first impressions. There was a test inside the book. It asked you, among other things, to picture a genius. Later, you were asked if the genius you pictured was Black or White … thanks to Miles, I passed this test of how bigoted I might be without even realizing it. Not that I don’t have my biases … don’t we all!

      • sugarplumfairy

        My dad was a homicide detective with the state police.. He knew every move we ever made.. So fortunately, the only drug I ever did was Advil.. Every kid should be so lucky..

        • FLUNK000

          Advil? You still need to do your “purif” … that stuff clogs your “perceptics” and make you “wooden”.

          You’re a fantastic person, but just imagine … a “Being” like you, at the top of “The Bridge” … it gives me goosebumps!

          Oh, to see you hovering, in “exterior” form, over the “oiliness table” … cavorting with the “pain wall” … or just you and I, floating down the street, holding “anchor points” …

          Have a Happy New Year, but more importantly, have a great “forever” !

          • sugarplumfairy

            Do I look wooden to you??? (in my best anne archer voice..)

            And I’ve been recruited by the best of ’em, Flunk.. It’d take more than a bridge and an oiliness table to win me over.. Dont need co$ to make me a big being.. I’m already superior .. Just ask Ziontologist..

            • ZIONTOLOGIST

              Don’t you … I am crying as I type this … Don’t you know I love you?

            • sugarplumfairy

              Lol.. Yah, I’m feeling the love.. Thx, Zion.. Back at ya.. When we set up housekeeping, though, the lrh books gotta go.. Sorry, dude.. And the prenup will stipulate no co$.. Other than that, I’m sure we’d make beautiful music together..

              Ok, back to work for me.. Bye, my new love..

    • aussiecase

      Acid is a brilliant thing. It kept me from joining the Sea org. I know many recruiters turned a blind eye and used various excuses to get around the “no acid” clause.

      For me, the “no acid” clause was enough to keep me from signing a contract. It gave me a good excuse that would stop the recruiters cold. If I said [forcefully and a few times] that I was following what Hubbard wrote then recruiters would give up and find someone else.

      • nobs

        I’ve said it before but here it is again: if the purification rundown is so F**King effective, why can’t potential SO recruits just do it and be signed up???!!! arghhhh. Hubtard/two sides of mouth/total bullsh*t/and so on.

  • BosonStark

    I’m hoping THE MASTER enjoys a revival when it wins a bunch of Oscars or a few significant ones, and it gets elevated to “cult classic” in DVD and Netflix sales. Maybe it will win the distinction of being the least grossing film to win Best Picture and take that away that away from The Last Emperor and Crash. Good evil galactic overlord Xenu, its domestic total is now at only $16M.

    However, I still feel it awakened a hankerin’ in the more literate public to know the real Dr. Elron Hubtard story.

  • ZIONTOLOGIST

    “The Master” was an aesthetic and intelligent take on a bizarre chapter of American history.
    I didn’t think it was vicious at all. It’s not like they showed Lancaster Dodd counting the money … how much did Dianetics and Scientology cost in the early days, anyway?
    Ah, the money we ex-Scientologists spent … that’s OK, I have enough money to last me the rest of my life … unless I want to buy something!

    • I think I may have got off cheap, only 150K. It’s just that career as an auditor never panned out. How DB of me to think being a psychologist was anything I ever wanted to do.

  • sugarplumfairy

    I’m glad you mentioned Skip Press.. I miss him.. He always had good info and a plethora of snark.. And I do love snark.. Come back to us, Skip.. I promise to never mention again how much I lovvvvve Obama..

    • FLUNK000

      Right on, sugar plum. Skip was great. He has a lot of good stories to tell that were a pleasure to read, especially coming from a salty dog of an ex-Scientologist like the skippress.

    • ZIONTOLOGIST

      Skip is a genius. Too bad so many busted his balls ,,, the words “I wuv you skippress” come to mind …

      • Chocolate Velvet

        “Skip is a genius. Too bad so many busted his balls ,,, the words “I wuv you skippress” come to mind …”

        Oh please. Skippress and I share a wuv you could never understand. He is my wrathful Deity, and I am his sarcastic Coyote, and we keep each other balanced.

        But I will LOL on skip’s behalf, that you portray him as such a whiny baby that he ran away because of the ball-busting. That is funny! He had better things to do than hang out with a bunch of scientology dorks like us, that’s all…

        • sugarplumfairy

          Lol.. Wrathful deity and sarcastic coyote.. I love it! Very well said, CV..

        • ZIONTOLOGIST

          Correct me if I’m wrong, but didn’t Skippress once tell you off by saying he wouldn’t concern himself with comments from someone who “writes like a drunk”?
          And didn’t you respond by saying something like, “So, I write like a drunk … like Ernest H. or Scott F.?”

          • Chocolate Velvet

            Wow, that was so long ago, and skip and I moved on from that. And yes, you are wrong. Actually, skip was confused by my references to Subgenius stuff, so it looked like drunk-talk to him. My real comment was “you mean like Ernest, or F Scott? Aww skip, you found my ruin and hurt my feelings! Imma go cry now… Not really skip! I don’t expect sweetness and light from my wrathful deity”. Or something like that. Lots of great writers were drunks, so is it an insult to be told you write like one? Perhaps not.

            That was my point, and it cracked him up. The bizarre thing is that you think you know the whole story just from what you’ve read here. You don’t know how much you don’t know, chumley. It is all wuv between skip and me. Jealous? I mean, really. I’m flattered by your constant attention, but wtf?

            • ZIONTOLOGIST

              “The only true wisdom is in knowing you know nothing.”
              ? Socrates
              “You can tell a lot about a person by the subjects they wish they knew more about.”
              — Ziontologist

            • Chocolate Velvet

              “I have no right to call myself one who knows. I was one who seeks, and I still am, but I no longer seek in the stars or in books; I’m beginning to hear the teachings of my blood pulsing within me. My story isn’t pleasant, it’s not sweet and harmonious like the invented stories; it tastes of folly and bewilderment, of madness and dream, like the life of all people who no longer want to lie to themselves.”
              — Hermann Hesse, Demian

    • Chocolate Velvet

      Actually, skip has a website, and a Facebook page : “Skip Press — word wrangler”. He is just focused on doing what he loves and teaching others as well. Pretty cool, I’d say. If you miss him, like his Facebook page or send him a message and say “hi”, he won’t be mad atcha!

      • BuryTheNuts2

        I did not know Skip Press wrote the “Lost Lightning” episode of Phenomenon.

        That is freaking cool….Nicola Tesla is one of my heros!

        • Chocolate Velvet

          Me too, BTN. An amazing inventor and scientific visionary. When I lived in Colorado Springs, I used to go up to Cripple Creek, where Tesla did research for a time. This was before the casinos came, and it was fun trying to find places he might have been, imagining the presence of such a vast intelligence there in that old mining town.

          • BuryTheNuts2

            Oh man, no kidding? I would have loved that shit!

            Colorado is where he was testing his mechanical oscillator and trying to make mini earthquakes with harmonic “continiuous’ waves.
            That is my favorite part of what Tesla was doing.
            Wonder if he really could have ‘cracked the earth in half”.
            Pretty impressive stuff for the turn of the last century.

            Plus, didn’t he almost inadvertently bring down a building in New York with that thing?

    • Axton

      What happened on that day he imploded? Was it a case of Fox News overdose?

      Anyway, he had some good things to share.

      • BuryTheNuts2

        It was right after the election and Tony posted something Skip found a tad too left for his personal tastes…
        I think it was a case of timing…
        I hope he comes back here too… I used to like it that he had no qualms on busting ones chops.

        • LaLa104

          Yeah, I’ve been amiss with my C0S watching for awhile and spent 2 hours catching up this morning and I was kinda surprised by Skip’s rant. I’ve always enjoyed his commentary. Didn’t like the snark against TO but hey, maybe he was on presidential overload and was having an off day. Would like to see him back though.

          • Skwerl King

            Yes I miss ol’ Skippy.

  • BuryTheNuts2

    http://www.kuna.net.kw/ArticleDetails.aspx?id=2284115&language=en
    Jentsing posted yesterday from wwp. here is an english blurb on belgium.
    This is freaking cool.

    • Axton

      WOW – amazing!

      • BuryTheNuts2

        Yep, it would be nice to see this one get some traction.

    • LaLa104

      I wish the states would go after C0S like this. Always curious how many is paid off and bribed in our court system. Hoping 2013 will reveal more of the seedy back stories of a smorgasbored of who in our government
      is covering for the cult. Just my conspiracy theory overload.

      • BuryTheNuts2

        LOL, that was basically my comment on Huff po…too bad the US doesn’t have the stomach to do this.

  • Axton

    Scientology theology is really quite simple.

    A body thetan is like a dumb soul, that can occupy snails and bugs, maybe a squirrel, but would prefer your elbow.
    A genetic entity thetan is like a dumb soul, but it gets to occupy humans to run their internal organs.
    A main thetan is like a normal soul, that can occupy humans, dogs, and horses.
    So a human has a main thetan, a genetic entity thetan, and thousands of body thetans.
    But let’s not forget that the main thetan can have thousands of engrams, like the memory of being digested by a carnivorous dinosaur (this engram is a common cause of psoriasis). And the genetic entity can have engrams, too.
    So a human has a main thetan and the thousands of engrams that go with that thetan, a genetic entity thetan and the engrams that go with that thetan, and thousands of body thetans.

    And all you need to sort it out and feel better is a lie detector. See, it’s easy!

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Did you just call the “sacred religious artifact” known as the E-meter a….”lie detector”?
      GAH……..my ears………..such blasphemy!
      Oh wait….maybe I am confusing the E-meter with the LRH butt plug as the “artifact”??????

    • “So a human has a main thetan, a genetic entity thetan, and thousands of body thetans.”

      That’s the best and most succinct summary of the profound theological complexity of body thetans that I’ve ever read Axton!

      So which thetan has to sit in the back of the bus? Some readers might be too young to remember that era in American history, but there is a parallel here with Scientology teachings.

      That is, the idea that some thetans are inferior to others and should be ruthlessly exterminated once they are discovered by electropsychometric analytical devices and cast into the outer darkness to dwell there for the next trillion years.

      I believe in equal rights for all thetans, regardless of which planet in the Marcab Confederacy they originated from and any minor discrepancies in their income tax returns which they may have submitted in error.

      Andrew

      • Axton

        If Miscavige is running short on 50 year old Glenfiddich and bespoke suits from Savile Row, he could generate additional revenue by claiming that body thetans have been discovered to have engrams, too. Thousands of body thetans, with thousands of engrams – that’s over a million charges to blow!

      • sugarplumfairy

        I really missed you..

    • InTheNameOfXenu

      I remember all this crap from a History of Man. Hubbard implanted this ridiculousness into his followers heads. No one need to look at the whole Xenu story for outrgeous bullshit.

  • BuryTheNuts2

    The race to which we are native — the theta line to which we are native — was actually highly mystic. It was capable of a lot of things — telepathy, teleportation, odds and ends, stuff — and concentrated rather heavily in that. This invader race came in with a lot of electronics and said, “Boys, all you’ve got to do is take this little jim-dandy whizzer and, you know, you will be twice as ‘thetesque’ as before.”
    -LRH

    Oooh….sometimes I forget how profound LRH’s “stuff” was!
    Awesome “odds and ends”

    • Man, I really wanted a “Jim Dandy Whizzer” for Christmas, but my husband didn’t know what one was. WOG!

      • Observer

        One of our wiener dogs is a Jim Dandy whizzer. He is very good at stealth whizzing. :-/

        • ze moo

          Holy penile envy, Dr. Freud!!! I wonder what kind of medical problem caused Lron to want a new whizzer? And why did a guy named Jim have the best one?

  • Axton

    “Could Belgium Bring Down Scientology?”

    http://www.theatlanticwireDOTcom/global/2012/12/belgium-scientology-charges/60398/

    “After a years long legal battle, federal prosecutors in Belgium now believe their investigation is complete enough to charge the Church of Scientology and its leaders as a criminal organization on charges of extortion, fraud, privacy breaches, and the illegal practice of medicine.”

    • BuryTheNuts2

      SWEET!
      Burn Baby Burn!!!!

    • sugarplumfairy

      Wow!! There may be something to this postulating stuff after all!!!

  • ze moo

    Tom Cruise rarely does interviews these days, but if you have access to BBC America, you can see him New Years eve on the Graham Norton Show. That show is usually on at 10 or 11pm and the host is one flaming homo. I mean that in the most endearing way. Norton is very funny, I like British humor. I doubt the dwarfenfürher will give Cruise crap for hanging out with 1.1 tone scale gay man, it is just work.

    http://www.thesun.co.uk/sol/homepage/showbiz/tv/4715389/Tom-Cruise-tells-Graham-Norton-he-insists-on-doing-his-own-stunts.html#ixzz2GMrJjor1

  • DeElizabethan

    Off topic but good news: “The Belgian government won’t charge Scientology for being a cult — authorities are focusing on prosecuting it as a criminal organization. Which is a new twist, as most of the group’s many court battles over the years have focused on establishing its legitimacy as a religion. Scientology’s well-funded legal team won very expensive cases against Time in 1991 and the Cult Awareness Network in 1996, but the Belgian authorities have been battling Scientologists since 2007, when the country tried to label the group with cult status in a move that even received blowback from the U.S. State Department.”

    http://www.theatlanticwire.com/global/2012/12/belgium-scientology-charges/60398/

  • Speaking of Tom Cruise, and totally off topic: Cruise has taken unusual measures to safeguard the videotape of his deposition in a lawsuit filed against him by Michael Sapir. I believe that Sapir is alleging that Cruise hired Pellicano to tap his phones. Cruise wants the videotape guarded at all times, no copies made, etc. Here is link:

    http://now.msn.com/tom-cruise-deposition-has-strict-secrecy-rules
    Wasn’t there a passage in the Morton bio saying that around the time of their divorce, Nicole Kidman was convinced that Cruise was tapping her phones?

  • aussiecase

    I believe Hana posted in the discussion of Freddie Quale indicating that she did not know of anyone like Freddie Quale in Hubbard’s inner circle.

    The 1946 movie “Let there be light” about veterans returning with troubles after WW II is sometimes also considered an inspiration for this movie. See: http://blogs.indiewire.com/theplaylist/the-basis-of-a-cult-diving-deep-into-the-master-trailer-20120721

    That isn’t to say the movie is not about Scientology in a general sense, certainly Hoffman and Hubbard are very similar, just that everything doesn’t have to directly come from Scientology.

    • nobs

      What if Freddie Quell is not a separate person from hubtard, but an alter-ego kind of character? Perhaps a way to show that side of elron?

  • Axton

    OK, now Huff Po has posted the Belgium story.

    Get ready for a deluge of posts bemoaning the fact that scientology is being prosecuted instead of the christians, hindus, buddhists, mormons… never fails to bring the less informed athiests out for a feeding frenzy of derailment.

    • BuryTheNuts2

      Time to head to Huff Po for a bit then….

    • So far neither the Huffington Post story nor the original story on The Atlantic’s web site are attracting much attention as of 3 pm EST. Only one comment has posted on Huff Post and and about 95% of the comments on the Atlantic story are anti-CO$. Could this be another sign of “turn tail and run away”?

      • Amstellicht

        I think the mod over at Huff Po must be taking a nap.

  • nobs

    Sometimes I get a little confused. Today I’m confused by this: “The tabloids, likely fed by Tom Cruise’s PR people, keep pushing the
    line that Cruise is leaving Scientology to win back Katie Holmes or
    spend more time with his daughter.” Tony, are you saying that the “rumor” started inside TC’s camp? The purpose would be…? To get lots of stories in People and the like? Wouldn’t TC be kind of pissed if his people said he was getting out of scn?

    I HAD noticed that skippress wasn’t commenting anymore, but I’d missed the post about presidential election/lrh/mormoms and had not been aware of his melt-down. I don’t miss him. As someone else pointed out, he’s a bit too malechauvinistassholepig for my tastes. I’m just saying.

  • On the side topic of 2012 high points, I’d say near the top was the day Tony saved this photo from the termites: